The Chancellor's Task Force Reports
In November 2009, Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little created three task forces to identify strategies for advancing the University of Kansas in the areas of research, admissions, and retention and graduation. You can read more about the mission of these task forces in her message to campus announcing the initiative.
- Research Drawing upon the recommendations of the Research Task Force, the university plans to take steps to remove barriers and create more incentives for faculty to conduct research and undertake scholarly and creative activities. The effort will include creating a university-wide system to measure scholarlship that takes into consideration diverse activities across academic fields, from the traditional measure of citations in research journals to creative scholarship and performance. Our goal is to enhance the impact of faculty work over the long term, regardless of discipline.
- Admissions The recruitment of talented students is a deciding factor in the success of the University of Kansas. The Admissions Task Force identified a number of admissions and recruitment challenges that KU faces as it seek ways to ensure that qualified students — especially from Kansas — choose to attend KU. Ultimately, admissions standards are set by the Board of Regents. KU will continue to consult with the Board of Regents and work with state partners to ensure a more rigorous high school experience for prospective students, consistent with the Board of Regents recommendations. We will continue to pursue our goal of admitting more prepared students, with a key priority for the year to identify more ambitious strategies of recruitment.
- Retention & Graduation The Retention and Graduation Task Force recommended both fundamental and instrumental changes to enhance KU’s efforts to successfully recruit and retain students, provide them with outstanding educational opportunities, and celebrate their timely graduation. Fundamental strategies will include examining and refreshing the curriculum as well as expanded roles for students in research and community engaged scholarship. Instrumental changes will include adjustments in policies, practices, and tools to address specific challenges, such as an early warning system that will alert officials when a student seems to be struggling academically. Chris Haufler, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, who chaired the retention and graduation task force, will work with the provost to develop strategies to address these recommendations.